Today in Apple history: Google comes out of beta

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Google Apple
Google and Apple were friends at first. It didn't last.
Photo: Google/Apple

September 21: Today in Apple history: Google comes out of beta September 21, 1999: A little startup called Google comes out of beta, with the launch of a website that will let the general public easily search the internet for information.

To Apple, which is embracing the internet with its twin iMac G3 and iBook products, Google seems like the perfect ally. Sadly, the relationship doesn’t remain rosy for long.

Facebook eyes 2023 launch for smart glasses project

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Facebook messaging apps
Zuckerberg has reportedly asked that the project be made a priority.
Photo: Facebook

Apple’s long-rumored AR glasses project could get some competition from the world’s biggest social network company.

Facebook is reportedly developing its own augmented reality glasses. The social network recently struck a partnership with Ray-Ban parent company Luxottica to speed the product along, according to a new report.

Google agrees to pay France $1.1 billion to end tax investigation

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A group called Google You Owe Us wants $1000 each after Google invaded their privacy
Google is the latest tech giant to be fined in France.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

Google will pay a total of $1.1 billion to end a four-year probe into its tax activities in France. This is a combination of fine and repayment of additional taxes Google didn’t pay first time around.

France and Germany have both pushed for tighter tax regulations of multination tech giants. Others — Apple included — have been charged in the past. They may have to stump up more cash in the future, too.

Apple claps back at Google’s claims of iPhone vulnerabilities

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security lock safe
Surprise, surprise, your iPhone isn’t as vulnerable to being hacked as Apple’s chief rival says it is.
Photo: Pexels

The accusations Google recently made about iOS security flaws were greatly overstated, deliberately “stoking fear” in iPhone users, according to Apple. The iPhone maker points out that the issues were much more narrow than its rival indicated, and were online for only a brief time.

State antitrust probes of Google and Facebook don’t include Apple… yet

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Millions of iPhone users in the U.K. are suing Google for illicit data collection
States have launched investigations into Facebook and Google but not Apple.
Photo: rawpixel.com/Pexels CC

Separate groups of US state attorneys general are investigating Facebook and Google for antitrust violations. So far, there has been no word of AGs probing Apple.

However, that doesn’t mean the iPhone maker has escaped probes by other government bodies, both in the US and Europe.

US orders Apple to identify users of rifle scope app

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random riflescope
Justice officials have their sights set on a lot of private data.
Photo: Captaindan/Wikimedia CC

The Department of Justice has ordered Apple and Google to turn over names, phone numbers and IP addresses for users of a gun scope app that allows gun owners to calibrate scopes and capture video.

Data privacy activists say the government’s ask would set a “dangerous precedent,” giving officials access to data on thousands of innocent people.

US attorneys general prep antitrust investigation into Google

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A group called Google You Owe Us wants $1000 each after Google invaded their privacy
Will Google be the first of the tech giants to face an investigation?
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

More than half of U.S. state attorneys general are preparing an antitrust investigation into Google.

This will mark a major ramp-up in the battle between U.S. regulators and Silicon Valley tech giants. The investigation is likely to be announced Monday. Other tech giants also may face antitrust scrutiny.

Google says iPhone security holes went unnoticed for 2 years

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for story on iPhone security
iPhone security had a few holes.
File photo: Cult of Mac

Google’s Project Zero team said it found gaping security holes in iPhone software that left users exposed to hackers before Apple fixed the flaws earlier this year.

Project Zero released a report on the flaws for the first time Thursday night. The team’s Threat Analysis Group found 14 different exploits that hackers used to gain private data, including photos, messages, contacts and real-time location information from iPhones.

Today in Apple history: Apple frenemy Google goes public

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Google Apple
Relations between Apple and Google started strong, but quickly deteriorated.
Photo: Apple/Google logos

August 19: Today in Apple history: With Google IPO, an Apple frenemy goes public August 19, 2004: Google floats its initial public offering on the stock market. Founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin turn into instant billionaires as the Google IPO cements the company’s status as a tech giant.

Relations between Google and Apple are good at the time, with Steve Jobs serving as a mentor to the company’s two young founders, and Google’s Eric Schmidt soon to join Apple’s board of directors. However, the peace won’t last long.

Apple sued for alleged lack of transparency over iCloud data

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iCloud
Apple isn't completely clear about where your data ends up.
Photo: Apple

A class-action lawsuit filed this week takes aim at Apple for storing some iCloud data on third-party servers.

The company is accused of breaching consumer trust to sell iCloud subscriptions. It states iCloud data will be “stored by Apple,” but offloads some of it to Amazon and other companies.